Up close, or from afar, the 2013 Subaru XV Crosstrek is what it is, which is a hatchback, built up with more ground clearance, protective lower-body cladding, and all sorts of more outdoorsy and off-road-oriented cues--many of them functional.
The Crosstrek essentially has exactly the same sheetmetal as the Impreza hatchback (except slightly different fenders), but with an entirely different set of details. But since the Crosstrek rides nearly four inches higher than the Impreza, you might not notice the similarities at first glance. Strategically blacked-out cladding help accentuate the added ride height, while vertical strakes at the rear fascia also help make it look higher and more like a utility vehicle. The so-called 'falcon' headlamp design is the same as in the Impreza, but more blacked-out lower cladding (and perhaps the expanded color palette, which includes Tangerine Orange) also helps lift the look. A buff-looking roof rack, built into all Crosstreks, also keeps with the image.
Inside, the look is very carlike--think the sportier side of small-car design, with a utilitarian flavor--and essentially the same as that of the Impreza but with more rugged upholstery surfaces and a few different trims. A straight-across dash and squared-off interior corners help maximize space, while a traditional analog instrument cluster and a suite of steering-wheel controls keep it feeling driver-centric.